In The News

Student Corner: CSU Student Occupational Therapy Association Silent Auction Fundraiser Success

Colorado State University’s Student Occupational Therapy Association hosted their annual Silent Auction fundraiser on March 1st, offering a night of entertainment, networking, and donation opportunities to CSU OT students and faculty, OTAC members, and OT practitioners. Proceeds from this event support CSU SOTA members in attending professional development opportunities as they prepare to become OT practitioners.

Together attendees enjoyed live music, door prizes, and hors d’oeuvres while exploring auction tables filled with items to bid on. The majority of the auction items were donated by local Fort Collins small businesses and included a variety of unique items including ski rentals and lift tickets, homemade art and jewelry, and many different gift cards to attend coffee, dinner, comedy shows or enjoy massages and facials.

The Silent Auction event was a huge success! Donations for auction items surpassed SOTA’s goal, students and OT practitioners participated in significant networking, and students learned from OTAC board members of the importance of membership in OTAC and the support the organization offers practitioners, for example, supporting the upcoming renewal of OT licensure legislation. Silent Auction funds will be used by CSU SOTA members to participate in professional development both locally and nation-wide including: 2019 AOTA conference fees, OTAC and AOTA membership fees, splinting courses, and NBCOT preparation. A portion of the funds will be donated to a non-profit organization supporting members of the local Northern Colorado community. We hope to see you all at next year’s CSU SOTA Silent Auction!

Kristina Ihrig, OTS, OTAC CSU Student Representative

 

Member Services Committee Meeting, April 17, 2019

The committee met over video conference.  Roll Call: Amber Sand, BS, COTA/L, Jill Groskreutz, OTD, OTR/L, and Marilyn Olson, OTAS.  Absent: Monica Waldorf, MS, OTR/L, and Lisa Olson, OTAS. 

Honorary Member SOP and Soliciting SOP are currently under revision. Postcards to promote membership to nonmembers is in mailing preparation stage. Revisions of OTAC website headings have been submitted to webmaster. Confirmed receipt of and approved Centennial State Financial corporate membership application. The Member Services subcommittee (Alesha Brightbill, OTAS, Meghan Weber, PMI Student Representative, and Jill Groskreutz ) is in the preliminary stages of developing a student portal for the OTAC webpage and a student video to promote OTAC membership; reviewed results from student-feedback survey. The collection of these surveys are still underway. 

Submitted by Amber Sand, OTAC Board Chair for Member Services

 

Professional Development Committee Meeting, April 12, 2019

The committee met over video conference.  Roll Call: Carmen Aguirre, MA, OTR/L, Valarie Dinger, COTA/L, Julie Silver-Seidle, OTD, OTR/L.

Purpose of the meeting was to introduce participating members of professional development activities and map out a calendar of continuing education activities for the remainder of the year.  

Northern District: Happy hour for OT month scheduled for April 17. Continuing education in Role of Sleep scheduled for May 1. Suggested calendar initiatives included a book study, educational session on legislative issues, continuing education on pelvic dysfunction and use of narrative in OT practice.  No additional events scheduled at this time. 

Denver District: Calendar initiatives that were suggested included best practices in documentation, PDPM, and impact of OT services in SNF. No events scheduled at this time. 

Seeking volunteer interest to lead the Denver, Southern, Northern Districts, SIS Sections, and seeking topics for PB&J.

Additional initiatives: Organize committee meetings monthly and organize in-person meetings 2x per year. Invite OTAC FB followers to participate in Neurology Panel. Outreach to invite members to participate in committee and volunteer to fill volunteer positions will be developed. 

Submitted by Amber Sand, OTAC Interim Board Chair for Communications (approved by Carmen Aguirre, OTAC Board Chair for Professional Development )

 

Happy OT Month (2019)!

April is National OT Month and we have a lot to celebrate!

We are still coming off from a major milestone of 100 years of serving people to help them find meaning though activity. This is a tribute to our long term value as it evolves in traditional and non-traditional markets. As a matter of local pride, the OTAC organization has been around for over seventy years as we were founded in 1946. Hopefully we will continue to demonstrate value to our membership for more years to come. It has been 45 years since the National Black Occupational Therapy Caucus was formed at AOTA and one of the foundering members of the Multicultural Networking Groups that are formally recognized at AOTA in 1993. Additionally, this year is the 60th Anniversary of Occupational Therapy Assistants who have been serving a vital role since World War II. There are currently about 55,000 OTAs in the United States. We are all grateful to the contribution of OT assistants to the occupational therapy profession.

Let’s take this month as an opportunity to educate your employer about the longstanding value of Occupational Therapy including its essential role in your organization and recognize the practitioners in your facility. It may be important to recognize that occupational therapy has a commitment to diversity in order to best serve consumers. It would be a great moment to show your appreciation for the Occupational Therapy Assistants in your facility with some kind of recognition. Consider ordering OT Month products online www.PromotoeOT.com. Lastly, if you can attend or let other professionals know about of the national opportunities for professional development offered by our national organization at the AOTA 2019 Conference and Expo going on in New Orleans April 4-7.

On a personal note, I would like to suggest reconnecting with those former classmates, co-workers or current colleagues to say have a great month! Use the hashtag #OTMonth and learn more at www.aota.org/OTMonth.

Have an excellent OT Month and get the word out!

Pamela DiPasquale-Lehnerz, MS, OTR/L
OTAC President

 

In Memoriam: Claudia K. Allen

photograph of Claudia Allen with floral print dress in front of foliageClaudia Allen, MA, OTR, FAOTA who influenced generations of OT practitioners, students and educators around the world passed away on February 25, 2019. Her contributions to our profession and the field of rehabilitation are countless as she informed the practice of Occupational Therapy with persons with cognitive challenges and offered us many tools to provide client-centered care.

Rightfully, Claudia was named one of the 100 most influential people in our profession by AOTA for developing the Cognitive Disabilities Model, with its assessment tools and caregiver strategies that promote best ability to function for clients with cognitive impairments.

I had the privilege to attend many of her trainings and seminars throughout my career and now despite the sad news of her passing, I feel gratitude and humbleness to have learned directly from such an important person in our profession.

Thank you once again, Claudia Allen.

Carmen Aguirre, OTR/L
Board Chair of Professional Development Chair

 
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